Battery Problem on Nikon D800: major battery drain & flashing green light when turned off!

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CGPhoto1
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Battery Problem on Nikon D800: major battery drain & flashing green light when turned off!
9 months ago

I just brought home the Nikon D800 a week ago and have been thoroughly disappointed in the battery life. In about 20 shots a full battery was already depleted to about 80%. I turned off the camera by the next day, the battery was completely dead despite being off. I used to be able to get approx. 1,200 shots easy on my D7000 before I felt the need to charge the battery - I could last a weekend trip on one battery easy. The D800 gets about 200-350 before wiping out.

I shoot weddings and have done so on my D7000 and only needed to carry a spare battery as a back-up, most of the time never actually using it (and we're talking shooting all day long). I finally upgraded to the Nikon D800 and while I love the shots I'm getting, I'm incredibly nervous with my upcoming weddings that my camera will go "dead" during an important moment... I'm tempted to send the camera back and ask for a replacement as I've tried three different batteries and the drain was terrible with all of them. I'm convinced it's the camera and not the battery/batteries.

Also, I'm not sure this is related, but the camera has a flashing green light in the bottom righthand corner that blinks when in the Off position. I've read it has something to do with the memory card so I switched it multiple times and it still continues to flash (until the camera goes completely dead). Could the poor battery life and blinking green light be related???

Is this indeed a defect or if this is going to be an ongoing issue, what are some remedies for extending the battery life and/or the amount of shots I can get in a session?

Thank you!!

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peter_moy13
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Re: Battery Problem on Nikon D800: major battery drain & flashing green light when turned off!
In reply to CGPhoto1, 9 months ago

There's definitely something not right with this.

The green light normally indicated activity to the card slots (reading or writing) and will also come on briefly during power up and power down.

I would try to remove the memory cards first and see if the light continues to blink after you've shutdown. There could be something wrong with one of your cards that makes the camera try to continually write to it draining the battery.  My camera doesn't blink at all when off.

Experiment with one card in one slot, then the other slot, then no cards to try and isolate the cause if possible.  Have you tried different cards as well?  It may not like one of your cards.

Another thing to try is a complete reset of the body to default values. I don't recall how this is done but I'm sure someone here will chime in.

Was this body brand new out of the box?

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olyflyer
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Re: Battery Problem on Nikon D800: major battery drain & flashing green light when turned off!
In reply to CGPhoto1, 9 months ago

CGPhoto1 wrote:

I just brought home the Nikon D800 a week ago and have been thoroughly disappointed in the battery life. In about 20 shots a full battery was already depleted to about 80%. I turned off the camera by the next day, the battery was completely dead despite being off.

Was that AFTER you fully charged the battery, or was that directly out of the box? I assume you read the manual, which states that the battery must be charged BEFORE you start using it.

I used to be able to get approx. 1,200 shots easy on my D7000 before I felt the need to charge the battery - I could last a weekend trip on one battery easy. The D800 gets about 200-350 before wiping out.

Well, I never tried the limit, but I know I get several hundred shots (5-600) from one fully charged battery with mixed (live view and VR on in some off in some) use. Of course, using the flash drains the battery more, so I have no idea why you get only about 2-300 shots if you have charged the battery fully. Unless of course if you use the flash for every image, in which case I don't believe your D7000 can give you 1,200 either.

I shoot weddings and have done so on my D7000 and only needed to carry a spare battery as a back-up, most of the time never actually using it (and we're talking shooting all day long). I finally upgraded to the Nikon D800 and while I love the shots I'm getting, I'm incredibly nervous with my upcoming weddings that my camera will go "dead" during an important moment... I'm tempted to send the camera back and ask for a replacement as I've tried three different batteries and the drain was terrible with all of them. I'm convinced it's the camera and not the battery/batteries.

Also, I'm not sure this is related, but the camera has a flashing green light in the bottom righthand corner that blinks when in the Off position. I've read it has something to do with the memory card so I switched it multiple times and it still continues to flash (until the camera goes completely dead). Could the poor battery life and blinking green light be related???

Is this indeed a defect or if this is going to be an ongoing issue, what are some remedies for extending the battery life and/or the amount of shots I can get in a session?

Did you actually read the manual? If not, please do. It is really well worth spending some time with it, since it will answer some of your questions and more.

As of the battery, I don't know, I suspect that it was not fully charged or was not a new and original battery. Of course, it can be defect as well, but I doubt that. If I was a pro I'd buy at least two spare batteries (original Nikon) and would use those alternating between the three, always keeping them charged. Contact Nikon if you are not sure about your camera or the battery, but my feeling is that it is you who are not comparing the D7k with the D800 the right way in terms of battery drain. Perhaps you remember the 1,200 images per charge wrongly, and in reality it was half of that, perhaps you have used the cameras differently when you compared them, I don't know.

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olyflyer
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Re: Battery Problem on Nikon D800: major battery drain & flashing green light when turned off!
In reply to peter_moy13, 9 months ago

peter_moy13 wrote:

There's definitely something not right with this.

No, I am not sure about that at all.

The green light normally indicated activity to the card slots (reading or writing) and will also come on briefly during power up and power down.

I would try to remove the memory cards first and see if the light continues to blink after you've shutdown. There could be something wrong with one of your cards that makes the camera try to continually write to it draining the battery.

Another thing to try is a complete reset of the body to default values. I don't recall how this is done but I'm sure someone here will chime in.

None of that is necessary. The flashing green LED is not an error indicator, it is 100% normal that it flashes. It indicates reading and writing and also the sensor cleaning (shaking of the AA filter).

Was this body brand new out of the box?

Good question. Was the battery brand new? Was it fully charged? Was the flash, live view and VR used in each and every image? Many questions and few answers.

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peter_moy13
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Re: Battery Problem on Nikon D800: major battery drain & flashing green light when turned off!
In reply to olyflyer, 9 months ago

olyflyer wrote:

None of that is necessary. The flashing green LED is not an error indicator, it is 100% normal that it flashes. It indicates reading and writing and also the sensor cleaning (shaking of the AA filter).

You're correct, it's not an error indicator but more like an activity indicator.

But the fact that it continues to blink after the power has been shut off bothers me.  It's like when you have a runaway process on the computer chewing up CPU and memory in the background slowing performance down.

The camera is still doing something when the power is off and that isn't right.  (Please don't make me start to stare at my body when it's off, I'm already considered crazy enough!)

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olyflyer
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Re: Battery Problem on Nikon D800: major battery drain & flashing green light when turned off!
In reply to peter_moy13, 9 months ago

peter_moy13 wrote:

olyflyer wrote:

None of that is necessary. The flashing green LED is not an error indicator, it is 100% normal that it flashes. It indicates reading and writing and also the sensor cleaning (shaking of the AA filter).

You're correct, it's not an error indicator but more like an activity indicator.

But the fact that it continues to blink after the power has been shut off bothers me. It's like when you have a runaway process on the computer chewing up CPU and memory in the background slowing performance down.

No, there is no "runaway process", it is flashing because there are some activities needed to be finished before shut down, just like your PC's hard disk activity indicator.

The camera is still doing something when the power is off and that isn't right. (Please don't make me start to stare at my body when it's off, I'm already considered crazy enough!)

I would not worry that much. Enjoy your camera instead. Looking for problems all the time just shortens your life and reduces joy.

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CGPhoto1
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Re: Battery Problem on Nikon D800: major battery drain & flashing green light when turned off!
In reply to olyflyer, 9 months ago

olyflyer wrote:

CGPhoto1 wrote:

I just brought home the Nikon D800 a week ago and have been thoroughly disappointed in the battery life. In about 20 shots a full battery was already depleted to about 80%. I turned off the camera by the next day, the battery was completely dead despite being off.

Was that AFTER you fully charged the battery, or was that directly out of the box? I assume you read the manual, which states that the battery must be charged BEFORE you start using it.

I didn't need the manual to know I needed to fully charge the battery, which I did. I also had two other batteries fully charged and they did the same thing.

I used to be able to get approx. 1,200 shots easy on my D7000 before I felt the need to charge the battery - I could last a weekend trip on one battery easy. The D800 gets about 200-350 before wiping out.

Well, I never tried the limit, but I know I get several hundred shots (5-600) from one fully charged battery with mixed (live view and VR on in some off in some) use. Of course, using the flash drains the battery more, so I have no idea why you get only about 2-300 shots if you have charged the battery fully. Unless of course if you use the flash for every image, in which case I don't believe your D7000 can give you 1,200 either.

I don't use the flash for every shot, maybe 1/3 of the time depending on situation. In cases of flash I nearly always have my Nikon SB-700 flash that's used.

I shoot weddings and have done so on my D7000 and only needed to carry a spare battery as a back-up, most of the time never actually using it (and we're talking shooting all day long). I finally upgraded to the Nikon D800 and while I love the shots I'm getting, I'm incredibly nervous with my upcoming weddings that my camera will go "dead" during an important moment... I'm tempted to send the camera back and ask for a replacement as I've tried three different batteries and the drain was terrible with all of them. I'm convinced it's the camera and not the battery/batteries.

Also, I'm not sure this is related, but the camera has a flashing green light in the bottom righthand corner that blinks when in the Off position. I've read it has something to do with the memory card so I switched it multiple times and it still continues to flash (until the camera goes completely dead). Could the poor battery life and blinking green light be related???

Is this indeed a defect or if this is going to be an ongoing issue, what are some remedies for extending the battery life and/or the amount of shots I can get in a session?

Did you actually read the manual? If not, please do. It is really well worth spending some time with it, since it will answer some of your questions and more.

As of the battery, I don't know, I suspect that it was not fully charged or was not a new and original battery. Of course, it can be defect as well, but I doubt that. If I was a pro I'd buy at least two spare batteries (original Nikon) and would use those alternating between the three, always keeping them charged. Contact Nikon if you are not sure about your camera or the battery, but my feeling is that it is you who are not comparing the D7k with the D800 the right way in terms of battery drain. Perhaps you remember the 1,200 images per charge wrongly, and in reality it was half of that, perhaps you have used the cameras differently when you compared them, I don't know.

Olyfler: Appreciate you taking time to respond but please understand I am looking for feedback to move forward with this issue with the experiences I've had thus far and I present my information as accurately/issues as accurately as I can. After some searching on this issue, I am not the only one experiencing similar issues. The battery was fully charged, an original Nikon battery, and, again, I used three of them to test the issue. I wish "just reading the manual" would fix the problem, but it hasn't which is why I turned to a community discussion. Of course the manual was the first place I turned to. Have a great rest of your day and thank you for your participation in this discussion.

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jaypike
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Re: Battery Problem on Nikon D800: major battery drain & flashing green light when turned off!
In reply to olyflyer, 9 months ago

Sounds like you have an Eye-Fi card that is transferring images.

If not, I'd go back and make sure your SD card and CF card are listed on the compatibility list for the D800 on Nikon's website.

jp

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jaypike
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Re: Battery Problem on Nikon D800: major battery drain & flashing green light when turned off!
In reply to jaypike, 9 months ago

I can easily get 2,000 images on my D800e for a wedding spanning 8 hours without having to change the battery and this includes having image review set to on for the D800e.

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CGPhoto1
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Re: Battery Problem on Nikon D800: major battery drain & flashing green light when turned off!
In reply to olyflyer, 9 months ago

olyflyer wrote:

peter_moy13 wrote:

olyflyer wrote:

None of that is necessary. The flashing green LED is not an error indicator, it is 100% normal that it flashes. It indicates reading and writing and also the sensor cleaning (shaking of the AA filter).

You're correct, it's not an error indicator but more like an activity indicator.

But the fact that it continues to blink after the power has been shut off bothers me. It's like when you have a runaway process on the computer chewing up CPU and memory in the background slowing performance down.

@peter_moy13: Thank you so much for all your feedback - I appreciate it. I'm literally looking at it right now and it's been flashing non-stop for several minutes. I've heard it was a SD card activity situation but I just got off the phone with the Nikon Help & Support line and even the technician over the phone sounded perplexed about the issue!

To answer a previous question, the blinking stops in the "On" position and also when I take out the SD card in the "Off" position. Weird thing is that even though I take the card out and turn everything "Off", the battery still dies quickly.

No, there is no "runaway process", it is flashing because there are some activities needed to be finished before shut down, just like your PC's hard disk activity indicator.

The camera is still doing something when the power is off and that isn't right. (Please don't make me start to stare at my body when it's off, I'm already considered crazy enough!)

I would not worry that much. Enjoy your camera instead. Looking for problems all the time just shortens your life and reduces joy.

Olyflyer: One can't enjoy their camera when there are problems presenting themselves; I'm looking for solutions so that I, too, can increase my "joy" - and in this case, my livelihood. If a change of perspective was all I needed to fix the issue, I'd have done so well before I turned to this community for some technical feedback.

As mentioned above, I just called the Nikon Help & Support team and they were great to help offer some ways to improve the battery problem. Time will tell if it actually worked and they said if it's still doing all the above mentioned issues that it's indeed a technical error and they would be happy to repair it (thank goodness I have a brand new warranty). In the meantime, I'll be purchasing a few more batteries and a battery grip so I can move forward for now.

Thank you for all your help!

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CGPhoto1
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Re: Battery Problem on Nikon D800: major battery drain & flashing green light when turned off!
In reply to jaypike, 9 months ago

jaypike wrote:

I can easily get 2,000 images on my D800e for a wedding spanning 8 hours without having to change the battery and this includes having image review set to on for the D800e.

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Hi Jay - That's what concerns me because my previous experience with the D7000 was similar, and I barely get an afternoon of casual shooting before the battery gives out. I thought it might be because of my "graduation" to a full frame and it's a much bigger camera (the D7000 uses the same battery), but we'll see. I've called the Nikon help & support group and after a reset and changing some of the settings, they hope that will solve the issue. Only time will tell and luckily I have the warranty to cover repairs which they say it could very well be a defect if things don't improve in the next couple of days.

Thank you for your help!

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CGPhoto1
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Re: Battery Problem on Nikon D800: major battery drain & flashing green light when turned off!
In reply to jaypike, 9 months ago

Called the Nikon support line and they verified my card is indeed supported!

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coronawithlime
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Re: Battery Problem on Nikon D800: major battery drain & flashing green light when turned off!
In reply to CGPhoto1, 9 months ago

CGPhoto1 wrote:

I just brought home the Nikon D800 a week ago and have been thoroughly disappointed in the battery life. In about 20 shots a full battery was already depleted to about 80%. I turned off the camera by the next day, the battery was completely dead despite being off. I used to be able to get approx. 1,200 shots easy on my D7000 before I felt the need to charge the battery - I could last a weekend trip on one battery easy. The D800 gets about 200-350 before wiping out.

I shoot weddings and have done so on my D7000 and only needed to carry a spare battery as a back-up, most of the time never actually using it (and we're talking shooting all day long). I finally upgraded to the Nikon D800 and while I love the shots I'm getting, I'm incredibly nervous with my upcoming weddings that my camera will go "dead" during an important moment... I'm tempted to send the camera back and ask for a replacement as I've tried three different batteries and the drain was terrible with all of them. I'm convinced it's the camera and not the battery/batteries.

Also, I'm not sure this is related, but the camera has a flashing green light in the bottom righthand corner that blinks when in the Off position. I've read it has something to do with the memory card so I switched it multiple times and it still continues to flash (until the camera goes completely dead). Could the poor battery life and blinking green light be related???

Is this indeed a defect or if this is going to be an ongoing issue, what are some remedies for extending the battery life and/or the amount of shots I can get in a session?

Thank you!!

It is of course difficult to diagnose issues by remote control, but since the behavior is clearly incorrect I can propose a couple of ideas for trouble shooting.  In any case, this is the procedure I would attempt if it were my camera.  Some of this stuff may not be necessary, but it's all quick, easy , and free.  I suggest that you do ALL these things at the same time and see if the behavior changes:

1) Perform a two button reset (QUAL and +/- buttons simultaneously for a couple of seconds) and leave it that way.  Might want to reset the shooting menu banks too.  In my experience returning the camera to factor new settings has frequently been the solution for me when I encounter some odd issue.

2) Remove all the memory cards and set the custom function (f11) to "Enable" to allow taking an image without a card installed.  Don't know if the reset returns the card slot setting to overflow or not, but if it doesn't then set it up that way.  That should eliminate any bad card sort of issue, but may not rule out a camera body save issue.

3) Set the custom function to turn off image review (c4).  Also set the custom function to turn off the meter in the shortest time allowable (c2).  Set LCD illumination (c10) to off.  Set auto focus assist (a8) to off.  Hopefully that gets most of the big stuff that might be using current turned off.

4) FULLY charge the battery. That means about 3 hours or so, with a bit of extra added after the flashing charge lite turns solid.  I seem to recall seeing reports of odd behavior that were ultimately related to low battery charge. Still doesn't eliminate a bad battery, but that's about the best you can do.

5)  If you have a battery grip or any other accessory attached, pull it off.

6)  Fire off a dozen shots or so shots without flash and lay the camera down until the next day.

7)  If nothing changes, you should still be in your return window and I'd ship the silly thing back for replacement

Since the green light glows solid while saving images to the card, if you get a solid green light with no card that seems like it might indicate a camera problem. I've never personally noticed a blinking green light under any conditions, but I would suspect that it indicates something similar to a failed attempt in saving to the card.  I understand you have tried different cards, but that sounds suspiciously to me like an issue saving to the card, which I suppose might be a camera body problem.

Just to be certain I understand, you say the green light blinks continuously for long periods of time?  I've not seen either of mine blink for any length of time ever.

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Hugo First
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Re: Battery Problem on Nikon D800: major battery drain & flashing green light when turned off!
In reply to CGPhoto1, 9 months ago

check your "battery info" in the setup menu. what does it say? is the battery in good condition?

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mais51
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Re: Battery Problem on Nikon D800: major battery drain & flashing green light when turned off!
In reply to CGPhoto1, 9 months ago

CGPhoto1 wrote:

olyflyer wrote:

CGPhoto1 wrote:

I just brought home the Nikon D800 a week ago and have been thoroughly disappointed in the battery life. In about 20 shots a full battery was already depleted to about 80%. I turned off the camera by the next day, the battery was completely dead despite being off.

Was that AFTER you fully charged the battery, or was that directly out of the box? I assume you read the manual, which states that the battery must be charged BEFORE you start using it.

I didn't need the manual to know I needed to fully charge the battery, which I did. I also had two other batteries fully charged and they did the same thing.

I used to be able to get approx. 1,200 shots easy on my D7000 before I felt the need to charge the battery - I could last a weekend trip on one battery easy. The D800 gets about 200-350 before wiping out.

Well, I never tried the limit, but I know I get several hundred shots (5-600) from one fully charged battery with mixed (live view and VR on in some off in some) use. Of course, using the flash drains the battery more, so I have no idea why you get only about 2-300 shots if you have charged the battery fully. Unless of course if you use the flash for every image, in which case I don't believe your D7000 can give you 1,200 either.

I don't use the flash for every shot, maybe 1/3 of the time depending on situation. In cases of flash I nearly always have my Nikon SB-700 flash that's used.

I shoot weddings and have done so on my D7000 and only needed to carry a spare battery as a back-up, most of the time never actually using it (and we're talking shooting all day long). I finally upgraded to the Nikon D800 and while I love the shots I'm getting, I'm incredibly nervous with my upcoming weddings that my camera will go "dead" during an important moment... I'm tempted to send the camera back and ask for a replacement as I've tried three different batteries and the drain was terrible with all of them. I'm convinced it's the camera and not the battery/batteries.

Also, I'm not sure this is related, but the camera has a flashing green light in the bottom righthand corner that blinks when in the Off position. I've read it has something to do with the memory card so I switched it multiple times and it still continues to flash (until the camera goes completely dead). Could the poor battery life and blinking green light be related???

Is this indeed a defect or if this is going to be an ongoing issue, what are some remedies for extending the battery life and/or the amount of shots I can get in a session?

Did you actually read the manual? If not, please do. It is really well worth spending some time with it, since it will answer some of your questions and more.

As of the battery, I don't know, I suspect that it was not fully charged or was not a new and original battery. Of course, it can be defect as well, but I doubt that. If I was a pro I'd buy at least two spare batteries (original Nikon) and would use those alternating between the three, always keeping them charged. Contact Nikon if you are not sure about your camera or the battery, but my feeling is that it is you who are not comparing the D7k with the D800 the right way in terms of battery drain. Perhaps you remember the 1,200 images per charge wrongly, and in reality it was half of that, perhaps you have used the cameras differently when you compared them, I don't know.

Olyfler: Appreciate you taking time to respond but please understand I am looking for feedback to move forward with this issue with the experiences I've had thus far and I present my information as accurately/issues as accurately as I can. After some searching on this issue, I am not the only one experiencing similar issues. The battery was fully charged, an original Nikon battery, and, again, I used three of them to test the issue. I wish "just reading the manual" would fix the problem, but it hasn't which is why I turned to a community discussion. Of course the manual was the first place I turned to. Have a great rest of your day and thank you for your participation in this discussion.

Reading your post make me curious, went to turn my D800 on - yes there is a flash of green light comes on momentarily - basically a confirm check, but no green light when turning it off - just went off, no light nothing - the camera is load with a 32GB Sandisk Extreme SD and a 32GB Sandisk Extreme CF.

Just took a friend wedding last weekend over 800 photos on one battery, VR always on with the 24-120 F4VR, certainly battery is not an issue - at the end of the day the battery still shows 1 bar - could possibly take another few hundred shots - night time reception therefore flash always used in blend mode - one set of 4 Eneloops last forever on the SB600 especially shooting at high ISO the flash never has to put out a full load.

I suggest you send your Nikon in for a check up.

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eric erickson
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Re: Battery Problem on Nikon D800: major battery drain & flashing green light when turned off!
In reply to CGPhoto1, 9 months ago

Had a similar problem with my D800 shortly after I purchased it about one year ago, and sent it back to Nikon. My green light wouldn't go out unless I took out the battery. They fixed it for free, and sent it back in about 2 weeks. It was still under warranty at the time. I do love the camera, and use it frequently. My battery life is very good. Never actually measured it, but I can get at least 400 shots out of a battery. I usually take it out and charge it well before it completely dies.

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Art Jacks
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Re: Battery Problem on Nikon D800: major battery drain & flashing green light when turned off!
In reply to CGPhoto1, 9 months ago

It is probably unlikely if you have bought the camera recently but there was a Nikon recall notice for batteries with a certain serial number, might be worth checking ? I presume you format your cards in the camera before using them , I sometimes get an occasional delay when the image is being written to the card but I assumed it was a card issue, the image is alright but just takes longer than normal for the green light to go out.

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MPA1
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Re: Battery Problem on Nikon D800: major battery drain & flashing green light when turned off!
In reply to CGPhoto1, 9 months ago

I presume that the batteries concerned are genuine Nikon ones and not third party copies?

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David314
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EyeFI support?
In reply to CGPhoto1, 9 months ago

CGPhoto1 wrote:

Is this indeed a defect or if this is going to be an ongoing issue, what are some remedies for extending the battery life and/or the amount of shots I can get in a session?

Thank you!!

In th menu items with the wrench there should be an option to turn EyeFI support on or off.  Might be worth a try turning it off.

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Roland Wooster
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Definately not right
In reply to CGPhoto1, 9 months ago

Something is not right, your battery should not go flat like that. The green light indicates some form of actvity (beyond just writing to the memory cards).

My green light flashes on an off (but only for a second) when I have my Pixel Battery Grip connected and I bump the buttons on the pixel grip. Even when everything is switched off.

However, it only flashes very briefly, and the battery doesn't seem to get impaced, so perhaps it's a slightly sub-optimal design by a 3rd party grip designer. I wonder if you have a battery grip attached or anything else connected to the camera that could be causing problems, GPS unit perhaps?

If you just have the camera and nothing attached and the green light comes on a stays on for ages even while it's switched off that's a problem.

If you're just talking about the green light being on while the camera clears the image buffer after sequence shooting and then turn it off, that's normal, but it shouldn't take more than a minute to empty even a full buffer, unless you have an incredibly old and slow memory card.

Roland.

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